Some great reviews coming out now for Shadow Breakers. Here's one from the Bulletin of the Center of Children's Books: 'A fast-paced and entertaining read, this middleschool fantasy offers plenty of action, chills, fascinating ideas, and even some entertaining British slang... The novel’s interweaving of magic and scientific elements is likely to please fans of both science fiction and fantasy, the team’s efforts to uncover the village’s secret past and the identity of the Shape will appeal to readers who love a good mystery, and the final battle scene will leave readers hungry for possible sequels.'
Covers and blurbs for the US and German editions of Shadow Runners/ Shadow Breakers received.
Shadow Runners is now on the shelves of WHSmith throughout the UK and available from all the usual online retailers.
All right, one and only plug for my old Christmas book as it is now available as an ebook! Take a look here if you want to get hold of it for the Kindle for the Scrooge in your life...
A quick update!
1) Shadow Runners went down well at the Frankfurt Book Fair - it's been sold to Brazil and audiobook rights have been bought by AudioGo. More news expected there soon.
2) Collecting Gadgets & Games is out now from Pen & Sword, who are also publishing my Famous Robots & Cyborgs in late 2012 or early 2013.
A very busy few months. I've been teaching on Sheffield Hallam University's Creative Writing MA, putting Shadow Runners through various stages of editing, writing two books for publishers Egmont based on the TV series MI High, and finishing my Robots book...
I've been busy with various projects inclusing the rewrites for my novel for Chicken House. That's now out in February 2012 - more details to come very soon!
The Big Announcement.
Signed a new deal with Chicken House (home of Dragonsdale, the Inkheart series and many more) for my new novel for readers aged 9-12, my first children's book in my own right. It's the first in a new series featuring a group of children investigating paranormal events on the South Coast of England, broadly "a modern-day Famous Five meets The X-Files." World Rights sold, publication in Autumn 2011! More news, obviously, to come over the next few months...
X Marks The Box is now out. See my blog on the subject for further news! Lots of publicity recently, including a Times Online live chat, Radio 5 Live interview with the fearsome Kate Silverton, and a handful of articles on political sites and blogs. Here I am on Periscope Post, on Left Foot Forward and finally on Politics.co.uk !
I am running another one-day novel course. Saturday 17th April 2010 from 10am-4.30pm at Quaker Meeting House, 10 St James Street, Sheffield. The day will include: openings, research, characters, plotting, structure, description, plus tips on how to put together a submission and approach an agent. Invaluable if you want to get published and don't know where to start, or if you keep getting rejected! Handouts, book/web recommendations, etc. Cost £70 - includes tuition, course resource pack, buffet lunch and refreshments. Advance bookings only: email me
I am also doing a talk on the history of Doctor Who at the Sheffield Hallam University's City Campus in the Peak Lecture Theatre on Tuesday 30th March 2010 from 7pm-9pm. Suitable for all ages and entry is free. Copies of Autonomy will be on sale afterwards at a discount price...
Sorry I have not been updating this website as often as I'd have liked. I will try and do better in 2010, especially as I have new books coming out! Please see my Facebook link (right) if you want a regular update!
I'll be talking about Doctor Who books at NovelCon in Manchester on Sunday 11th Oct.
Doctor Who: Autonomy is now out and has been doing good business in the shops. No.1 in the Tesco charts and held in the top 5 the following week, at No.3 !
Am I going to get a holiday? Still busy writing and appearing in various places in July. Already got almost my full quota of bookings for the Autumn term - started on 2010 now! Still only cosmetic changes to the site, I'm afraid.
Imminent launch of Autonomy has resulted in an upsurge in school bookings - see Calendar page for remaining dates.
I'll be reading and speaking at the Lincoln Book Festival in May. Click the logo above for their official site! My event is at the Lincoln Drill Hall on Saturday 16th May at 4.30pm.
Things have been quiet on here, but as soon as I have finished Autonomy I will be back for a big update, and the kind of wash-up and brush-up of which Alesha Dixon would approve.
Delighted to announce that I am one of three novelists writing the second official triad of BBC Doctor Who books for 2009. Mine is entitled Autonomy. The other two are The Krillitane Storm by Christopher Cooper and The Taking of Chelsea 426 by David Llewellyn. We're all bringing back some familiar faces as well as introducing some new one-off assistants for the Doctor!
And X Marks The Box is finally with my publishers.
Madly busy. Following the Faber sales conference in London and the Children's Writers' & Illustrators' conference in Cambridge, I'm back in Yorkshire for a bit doing various pieces of work. Watch this space for a very exciting announcement soon!
The lovely people at Icon have given me the finished cover for X Marks The Box, which is to be published in May 2009. Next month I'm off to the Faber sales conference (Faber distribute Icon, among others) to give it a plug - very nice to be asked! It's displayed on the left.
The paperback of This Is The Day is now in the shops.
I am delighted to have been the recipient, this month, of an award from The Authors' Foundation to assist with writing and research costs for my forthcoming non-fiction title X Marks The Box. This fund, administered by the Society of Authors, is a valuable resource for writers who need extra funding for particular projects, and allocation is decided by a panel. The assessors this year were Lady Antonia Fraser, Wendy Cope, Jim Crace, Susannah Herbert and David Profumo. My thanks to them all!
Apologies for the lack of info recently! I've been... working.
Allison & Busby have now got the finished cover for the new paperback of This Is The Day up on their site. I've had my author copies, so it'll be hitting the shops any day now.
Delighted to announce that the Arts Council have awarded me a grant for 2008. It is to enable me to have some time to develop as a writer - specifically, to work on my first major work for children. More news on the project as it develops.
I'm continuing to teach classes for adults and children in the first half of this year, as well as working on the novel, the children's book and the politics book for Icon (see January report below).
Allison & Busby have been kind enough to send me the cover copy for the new edition of THIS IS THE DAY, out in B-format (mass market paperback), in June 2008. Publisher site here.
THIS IS THE DAY
‘A sharp, observant, energetic writer… A joy to read’
Tom had never been unfaithful to his wife.
For one thing, he hadn’t realised it was going to be so bloody difficult.
Meet Tom and Ella Barclay. When they first met at university, it was earth-shatteringly romantic. Literally. The broken window and flying debris were testimony to that. And since then they have successfully negotiated the pitfalls of first dates, getting married and starting a family. If there was an ‘Ideal Husband and Wife’ category at the Olympics, they would be leaps and bounds ahead of the competition. With a smart house in suburbia, two lovely children at private schools, creative and interesting jobs, they seem to have it all…
But when fate turns the Barclays’ world inside-out in a way they could never have imagined, they find themselves hurtling headlong towards meltdown. Sometimes, you have to lose what you have in order to truly appreciate it.
A darkly comic, bittersweet take on thirty-something married life – a must-have read for anyone who’s ever wanted to have their cake and eat it.
Praise for Daniel Blythe
‘A real page turner… Nothing short of genius… If you are a thirty-something and bored with what life is dealing you, this could be the book to make you think again’ South Wales Argus
‘A fine, acerbic and humorous style; poignant and telling’ Publishing News
‘An infectious page-turner, written with remarkable style and efficacy’
Maxim (Book of the Month)
JANUARY 2008 Push The Button
Back with an update for the New Year.
2008 should see the B-format paperback of This is the Day, which is featured in Allison & Busby's latest catalogue. By the way, my publishers now have a blog!
I'm also writing my ninth book - which is a friendly, no-nonsense, humorous and irreverent guide to the workings of politics, aimed at those who are disillusioned or have never voted. It'll probably be called X Marks the Box, and is to be published by Icon Books.
I'll be doing a lot of freelance teaching and workshop stuff in 2008. With that in mind, I'll be adding a section to this site about it all.
NOVEMBER 2007 Things Can Only Get Better
My ninth book has been commissioned. Watch this space for details of title, publisher, content and publication date! They will go up when I have signed the contract.
OCTOBER 2007 Forever Autumn
Back after a break with a bit of a cosmetic site overhaul. The ads have gone - for now, anyway - as I wasn't happy with the content of all of them. Not Moonfruit's fault, as they need to make money to keep going - but I don't think it's appropriate for me to be sporting links to vanity publishers or 'agents' who charge an up-front fee.
The one-day writing course (as advertised below) was a great success and I will be running another before Christmas - look out for an announcement here and on Facebook.
Some more content will be added in due course...and maybe some more news soon as well!
AUGUST 2007 This Is The Life
'This well-crafted novel from Daniel Blythe is a real page-turner...
Blythe's meticulous attention to detail makes this book all the more gripping, and his metamorphosis of Ella's character throughout the book is nothing short of genius. If you are a thirty-something and bored with what life is dealing you, this could be the book to make you think again.' South Wales Argus
I think that's the first time I have ever had the g-word.
I'm running a one-day course/workshop in September for aspiring novelists - if you are in the Yorkshire/Derbyshire area, please consider giving it a go. The venue is a lovely converted barn in a little rural pocket of western Sheffield. Should be very inspirational! Click to book by email - please put 'One-day course' in the header.
****NEW Special One-Day Course****
HOW TO WRITE A NOVEL AND GET IT PUBLISHED
at Wood Lane Countryside Centre, Wood Lane, Stannington, Sheffield S6 5HE on Saturday 22nd September 2007.
9.30am to 4.30pm (morning and afternoon session with break).
Price: £60.00 - includes tuition, all course materials and morning and afternoon refreshments.
A one-off course aimed at all aspiring novelists, led by an experienced published writer. A chance to develop your skills in a beautiful rural setting.
Increase your writing confidence * Develop the tools and framework for completing a novel * Find out how to write query letters to publishers/agents * Learn the best way to write a synopsis * Pick up tips on character creation, dialogue, viewpointing and more * Learn how to interest a literary agent in your work * Find out what editors do and how to talk to them * Learn about the current markets for novels in the UK * Find the most useful books and websites for writers * Get extensive handouts and tip sheets on all the above and more * Benefit from the tutor’s 14 years of experience as a published writer * The chance to ask questions about all aspects of writing and publishing.
Please BOOK IN ADVANCE - email me.
Payment is requested in advance in order to secure a place.
JULY 2007 Baby I Want You To Know
- I'll be on BBC Radio Sheffield again in July and August. On Wednesday 25th July between 2pm and 3pm, I'm appearing on Rony Robinson's show - in the regular writing slot with Ray Hearne - talking about how to get your novel started. And on Monday 13th August I'll be interviewed at greater length by Rony about my writing career in general and about the new novel. Listen here!
- This is the Day is now out and in the shops. Please go and buy a copy! It's featured on the July edition of the BBC Book Club on BBC Radio Newcastle with Keith Topping - listen here.
- I'm having an official launch at Blackwell's Bookshop in Broomhill, Sheffield on Wed 25th July at 7pm (rescheduled date).
- More overseas sales now - and those lovely Finns have snapped up I Hate Christmas. It'll be out with Ajatus Kirjat, part of the Gummerus house which published the Finnish edition of Dadlands.
JUNE 2007 Love Shine A Light
- I Hate Christmas has been sold to Germany and will be published later this year by Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag.
- Slovenia is the latest country to make an offer on Dadlands. And my copies of the finished Finnish version (sorry) arrived a few weeks ago and you can see it featured on my Finnish publishers' site here! They may well be interested in I Hate Christmas too - stay tuned...
- I have been doing some work as a Writer In Schools with Year 5 pupils at two Sheffield primary schools, which has been very rewarding. It's something I would encourage all writers to do if they get the chance. These are the writers of the future - we need to stimulate and inspire them, and not allow their creativity to be squashed by the demands of the National Curriculum!
APRIL 2007 The Sound of the Crowd
- This is the Day has its first official pre-publication review in Publishing News. Sue Baker says it is 'Chronicled in a fine, acerbic and humorous style; poignant and telling.'
- My author copies have arrived, and very handsome they look. My agent's copies unfortunately didn't, so I've just had to send an emergency copy to her so she can have one to show around the London Book Fair next week.
- Please note that the page count on Amazon is wrong - the novel clocks in at a hefty, value-for-money 526 pages. That's about 132,000 words!
MARCH 2007 Back For Good
- This is the Day is out in just a few weeks, and is now
available for pre-order. Expect to see it in your local bookshop in May. Please go and order it there so that they get some copies in!
FEBRUARY 2007 A Day in the Life
- Cover and info for This is the Day now up at Amazon and
at my publishers' site.
JANUARY 2007 Zeroes And Ones
- DOWNLOAD AN EXCLUSIVE SHORT STORY FOR CHARITY
For a limited time only, I am offering a download of an exclusive, new 1800-word short story 'Ars Longa, Vita Brevis', which is not intended for general publication and for which I will receive no royalties or other fee. The story is offered in return for a donation to Steve and Julia Goddard's Kilimanjaro climb for charity, which you can read all about here, and donate to here. (The amount you donate is up to you, but I'd like to suggest a minimum of £1.) Please email me to let me know you have donated and I will send you an instant copy!
Hooray! Christmas and Hogmanay insanity are over for another year and the world is slowly getting back to normal... or what passes for it. I can now, finally, say that my new novel is coming out THIS YEAR! Keep tuning in here for exclusive news and extracts.
The Dadlands word continued to spread internationally as my ever-dedicated agent Caroline Montgomery sold the book to France, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Finland... We also got some publicity in the UK through ABC Magazine and the big posters in the Underground... As well as my usual writing and teaching activities, I led a panel of experts at the Off The Shelf literary festival... I Hate Christmas was out again in December and I was back on air on various radio stations to promote it... I had a rant about the vanity press and pointed people towards the research of the excellent campaigner Johnathon Clifford... And, of course, the copy-editing, cover and blurb were completed for my new novel This Is The Day, out in May 2007.
I Hate Christmas published by Allison & Busby on 7th November 2005...Dadlands published by Capstone-Wiley on 28th October 2005...The Encyclopaedia of Classic 80s Pop was still available...
I was featured in Scotland On Sunday’s Shelf Life column on 18th Dec - read it here!... And my Off The Shelf literary festival event, How To Get Published, was a great success.